Hotel Druk, Phuentsholing
Hotel Druk in Phuentsholing was a very classy place and it set a high standard. The reception staff was efficient, if a little bit formal, but nice enough. The room was well maintained and immaculate. The beds were extremely comfortable. AC was much appreciated. There was a flat screen TV (didn’t turn on), WIFI for a charge and bathroom goodies (shampoo, slippers, shoe polish etc). The restaurant staff went a long way to help find Debbie food she could eat.
Tenzingling Hotel, Paro
The Tenzingling Hotel, in Paro, is also on the higher end. It is a bit remote from town but we were so bagged each night that going out in the evening was out of the question. Although simply furnished the room was very spacious, which made for a pleasant stay. It was very clean. There was a TV and free WIFI. Hot water was limited so we showered quickly. The staff was doting and took very good care of us. It was very quiet in the evening which made for good sleep. The heat didn’t work in our room, but there were extra comforters, so we were toasty warm. The buffet was average but different enough each night to make the meals interesting.
Dochula Resort, Dochula Pass
The Dochula Resort is slightly tattered but still a nice place to stay. The setting is outstanding and waking up to a view of the Himalayas is not to be missed. There is a pair of large high powered binoculars for guests to use for a closer view. The bed was a bit hard but we slept well. The food was only OK, this is an area where the hotel could improve. The rooms were clean. The corridors are reverberant and the noise in the hall travels quite well. The staff was super – extremely nice and polite.
Hotel Gakling, Phobjikha Valley near Gangtey
The guest house Hotel Gakiling in the Phobjikha Valley was the most ‘rustic’ place we stayed. We had been given the heads up so we were prepared. Our room was in the main building and was warm and well built, whereas our traveling companions’ room was in the back in another building and it was extremely rustic, with an outdoorish bathroom and they woke up to an 11 C chill in their room. There was no hot water and we were warned not to plug in anything as the power surges killed another tourist’s laptop. The staff was very nice and not so formal as other resorts, this was pleasant – it is not necessary to be stuffy and do a good job at guest service. They served the best food (tofu and soya beans) we had eaten to that point in the tour, and the communal atmosphere of the dining/meeting room was great for meeting other travelers and swapping experiences and stories. A new hotel was being built in behind the current one. The valley was most serene and for the sake of a little roughing it, this hotel was worth one night.
Mountain Lodge, Jakar
The Mountain Lodge in Jakar, was overall, our favourite place. The biggest issue was the availability of hot water. If you did not have a shower at exactly the right time, and that time varied each day, having a hot shower was not possible. The water was at least not cold so we didn’t have too much to complain about. The wood stove heaters could be a problem in the middle of winter but it was October and we did not have any issues with a cold room. The hotel was very quiet; we were able to sleep through the night easily. The internet at the hotel was about the most consistent we experienced on the trip. The food was excellent and the staff dealt with Debbie’s food allergies very well. The rooms (small, but manageable) were cleaned each day and although it was not necessary, we were provided with clean towels. We found the staff at this hotel to be particularly attentive. The three young people that worked the dining area at this hotel were exceptional.
Tashi Ninjay Guest House, Trongsa
The best feature of the Tashi Ninjay Guest House, in Trongsa, is the view, which was worth the price of admission. The one issue was there was no fire exit on the floor we were on. If a fire blocked the main exit, the windows were far too high to jump from and the exit at the end of the hall had no stair to the ground. The rooms were quite ordinary, but provided all the essentials. The food was, in our opinion, substandard and needs work. Again, the view made this hotel worth a stay.
Hotel Y.T., Punakha
In the Y.T. Hotel in Punakha, we were boarded in a palatial suite – luck of the draw. Again the view was outstanding. We had enough room to hold a party. Our trip mates were not quite so lucky and occupied a much smaller room with a view onto an adjacent wall. Although the beds were twin beds, each was big enough to serve as a double. The rooms were very clean, including the bathroom. The owner took special interest in the restaurant and floated from table to table greeting the guests personally. The food was noticeably good. The owner and restaurant staff were very good to make Debbie a special breakfast for the morning we hiked near the Dochula Pass.
Hotel Phuntsho Pelri, Thimpu
The Hotel Phuntsho Pelri in Thimpu, is a high end hotel, that we found a bit pretentious. The shortcomings; first, they charge way too much for the use of the internet, to use the business centre, the charge was 6 Nu per minute, the internet café 50M from the front entrance charges 1 Nu per minute; second, the bathroom was not as clean as it could be, for a high class hotel it should be immaculate; third, our bed was super hard, it was by far the hardest bed we experienced during our stay in Bhutan, that said our travel companions said they had an overly soft bed. On the good side, it is centrally located and everything we needed during our 3 days in Thimpu was very handy. The rooms were well appointed; the furniture was appropriate and nice. Even though the hotel was located in the shopping area and there was a ‘club’ adjacent, it was very quiet after 10pm and we slept well. The heat worked and we used it for an hour each evening to take the chill out of the air before we went to sleep. There was more than ample hot water for our showers and we quite enjoyed the luxury while it was available. The restaurant was excellent. The food was good and the head waiter was extremely conscientious. He was diligent in finding food for Debbie and when our travel mate, R, was feeling ill and did not show up for dinner, the waiter put together a meal of bland food and took it up to R’s room so he could at least try to eat something. That action was far beyond anything we expected.